Gianyar Regency

Travel Guide Lesser Sunda Islands Bali Gianyar Regency

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Introduction

The last dynasty of former Gianyar kingdom dates from 1771 when a Griya Anyar (New Palace) was inaugurated by king Ida Anak Agung I Dewa Manggis. Late in the 19th century the kingdom was set upon by neighbouring kingdoms Badung, Bangli, Klungkung and Mengwi. To ward off his enemies King I Dewa Gde Raka (reigned 1896 to 1912) subjected himself to the Dutch colonial government. He and his descendants reigned as stedehouder until the establishment of Gianyar as a regency within the Republic of Indonesia. Gianyar is one of the richest regions of Bali, economically and culturally. The kingdom became known as a tourist destination, when German painter Walter Spies in 1927 settled in Ubud. In 1956 the art museum ‘Museum Puri Lukisan’ was inaugurated in Ubud. After mass tourism took off in the 1990ies several recreation parks were added to the cultural attractions.

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Geography

Gianyar is one of Bali’s smaller regencies with 6.5% of Bali’s area. It is the second most densely populated regency after Badung. One fifth of the area lies more than 250 metres above sea level, in the north the land reaches a height of 750 metres. Nine rivers run southward to the sea, including the rivers that form the borders with Badung and Klungkung regencies. Most of them never run dry. The rivers are an asset for rice field irrigation, yet less than half of Gianyar’s area can be irrigated. The coastline of Gianyar is about 20 kilometres long. There are no volcanoes or lakes in Gianyar.

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Towns

  • Gianyar, the capital of Gianyar regency. Gianyar district counted 93,000 inhabitants in 2018.
  • Ubud, generally considered the cultural centre of Bali. Ubud district had 73,000 inhabitants in 2008. Presently the town counted 15,000.

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Villages

  • Batubulan - Batubulan Village is an art village spread out along the western border of Gianyar Regency. It is famous for the Barong and Kris Dances that are performed here.
  • Bedulu - Nowadays Bedulu is a village on the banks of Petanu river just east of Ubud. But in the 10th century Bedahulu - as it was then named - was the seat of king Udayana, the first Balinese king whose historicity is well established. This may explain the abundance of archaeologocal sites in the vicinity, like the Elephant Cave, also known as Goa Gajah and the Yeh Pulu rock carvings. In Bedulu one also finds Bali’s Archaeological Museum.
  • Kedewatan– Kedewatan village lies five kilometres north-west of Ubud market. It functions as an extension of Ubud, with many small hotels and restaurants. A specialty of the latter are mixed rice dishes. For adventure one can go rafting on the rapids of Ayung River.
  • Kemenuh – Among the beautiful natural scenery of Kemenuh village one can visit a Butterfly Park and an Orchid Garden. These are about ten kilometres south of Ubud.
  • Mas – Mas village, only five kilometres south of Ubud market, is a centre of wood sculpture handicraft, the place to go for souvenirs.
  • Pejeng – The “Pejeng Moon” is the world’s largest bronze kettle drum, preserved in Penataran Sasih temple in Pejeng village. The drum face is 160 cm in diameter. According to Bali lore it was a wheel of the chariot that carried the real moon around the world, and fell to the earth. According to archaeologists the drum was made around 300 B.C. by the Dong Son people, whose bronze products were traded all over South-East Asia. The temple lies a 10 minutes drive east of Ubud market.
  • Peliatan – The first Balinese dancers to perform abroad were a legong group from Peliatan. In 1931 two young girls performed this dance at the Paris Exhibition. Peliatan remains famous for its dancers, but is also a village of carvers and painters. The village is only two kilometres from Ubud market.
  • Petulu – Bird lovers go to Petulu village at five kilometres north of Ubud to see the white herons (kokokan in Balinese). From October through March hundreds of them make their nests and raise their young in the trees bordering the rice fields of Petulu. April through September, after the young have flown out, they go foraging elsewhere during daytime. But one can still see them by nightfall, when they return to roost.
  • Tampaksiring

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Sights and Activities

Archaeological Sites

The area between the Petanu and Pakerisan rivers is of great historic importance. Here – in present Bedulu village – was the seat of king Udayana in the tenth century AD. That explains that most sites of archaeological interest in Bali are found in this area.

Gunung Kawi Tampaksiring

Gunung Kawi Tampaksiring

© theo1006

  • Gunung Kawi Tampaksiring – Arguably the most important archaeological monument of Bali. Nine 7-metre-high shrines have been cut out in the sheer rock face of Pakerisan river valley. Their construction has probably started as early as 989 AD during the reign of king Udayana and continued during the reign of his sons Marakata and Anak Wungsu (reigned 1049 – 1077). The shrines are thought to have served as stana, places to worship the deceased kings and their queens. There are also cave-like rooms in the vicinity, cut out in the rocks, named Goa Baru and Jero Gede. And a pleasant short walk along rice fields brings one to Pura Bukit Gundul and Pura Melanting. All are managed by the people of Penaka village in whose territory they are located. Visitors have to wear a sarong, which is lent for free after one has paid the entrance ticket. Hours: daily 8am till 6pm. Price: adult IDR 50,000; child IDR 20,000. Parking: motorcycle IDR 2,000; car IDR 5,000; bus IDR 20,000.
  • Tirta Empul Temple
  • Pura Pegulingan – An octagonal foundation of a stupa was discovered in 1983 in Manukaya village, Tampaksiring distirct. Excavations brought to light among others a Buddha statue and inscriptions from which can be deduced that the temple was inaugurated in 1178 AD. From these and other finds it can be concluded that Hinduism and Buddhism were amalgamated. The stupa has been rebuilt and is now the centre piece of the site.
  • Goa Gajah or Elephant Cave was discovered as an archaeological site in 1922. It dates at least from the 11th century, probably even the 8th, and may have been cut out in the hill as a place for meditation. More excavations in 1950-554 uncovered among others a bathing place and seven statues of women holding a water spout. The site is located on the bank of Petanu river in Bedulu village. The name seems to be an error by the Dutch discoverer. Because the monster head over the cave entrance was much damaged, he mistook it for an elephant head.
  • Yeh Pulu Relief - The Yeh Pulu relief is carved on a limestone cliff facing rice fields, 26,5 metres long and 2 metres high. There are several scenes that might depict a folk story, but the story is not known. Among the scenes are a man carrying gourds on a pole, a rider on a horse, two men fighting with an animal (tiger?), two men carrying the dead animal on a pole, a woman holding the tail of another horse with rider. This manner of story telling can also be found at Penataran Temple in Java, where it has been dated at around 1400 AD. The Yeh Pulu relief is located in Bedulu village, in the valley of Petanu river, six kilometres from Ubud market.
  • Goa Garba or Garba Cave is another archaeological site on the banks of Petanu river. Balinese believe that the remains of Kebo Iwa, the prime minister of Bedahulu kingdom are buried here.
  • Candi Tebing Tegallinggah was designated as a tourist site in 1992. Like others, it was cut out in the banks of a river, Pakerisan river. There are two temples, one on either side if the river, and several meditation caves.
  • Puseh Temple – Pura Puseh is an ancient temple located in Batuan village ten kilometres south of Ubud. A split gate leads to a wide courtyard. A second gateway with closed doors separates it form the next yard, visitors pass through small doors at its side. A third yard is the inner sanctum, where one finds the three-tiered main temple, with inscription of the year Saka 944 (1022 AD). Restoration work was done in 1992. The whole compound is full of statues and intricately carved reliefs. Across the road from the temple a pavilion has been built for daily performances of popular dances: Barong in the morrning and Kecak in the evening.
  • Durga Kutri Temple - At the archaeological site Pura Bukit Dharma Kutri actually there are four temples situated on the side of Dharma Hill. At the lowest level is Pura Puseh, Next higher is Pura Ulun Carik, then follows Pura Bukit Dharma, and one reaches Pura Kédarman on top of the hill by a stair of 102 steps. The temples date from the 10th to 13th century and contain several statues from the same era. The popular name Durga Kutri Temple refers to the statue of Durga in Pura Puseh. Eight-armed Durga is the fierce protective mother of the Hindu universe. The location of Durga Kutri Temple is in Buruan village, eight kilometres south-east of Ubud.

Temples

  • Pura Kebo Edan
  • Gunung Kawi Sebatu – Gunung Kawi Sebatu is a sacred place with several ponds and spouts of crystal clear water. It is said that god Vishnu himself created the water source to relieve the suffering of the people after he had defeated evil king Mayadenawa who forbade the people to worship the gods. Located in Sebatu village, at 15 kilometres north of Ubud market.

Nature

  • Keramas Beach - Quiet black sand beach appealing to surfers.
  • Ceking Rice Terraces – Level fields for rice cultivation are in short supply in Bali. That’s why Balinese farmers have perfected the art of terracing the hillsides and irrigating them. A prime example of the beauty of these stair-wise rice-fields is found in Ceking hamlet, Tegallalang village. While you are there you can have a go at the Rice Terrace Swing, tied between two high palm trees. Feels like flying! The parking is just 10 kilometres north of Ubud. Entrance fee IDR 15,000; a five minutes go at the swing costs IDR 150,000.
  • Tegenungan Waterfall in Petanu river is just 15 metres high, but has a big flow of water year round. To reach the foot of the fall one has to descend several hundred steps. It is located 10 kilometres south of Ubud, not far from Kemenuh Orchid Garden.
  • Kanto Lampo Waterfall – An easily accessed waterfall, and therefore often crowded. The water comes flowing down a giant flight of stairs. There is also a cave, used for meditation and home to bats. Open: Daily 8am to 6pm. Entrance fee: IDR 15,000. Address: Beng village, Gianyar district (11 kilometres east of Ubud).
  • Hidden Canyon Beji Guwang – An exceptional canyon with weird rock formations and colours. Entrance fee: IDR 15,000. Guide IDR 50,000. Address: Guwang village, Sukawati district (15 kilometres south of Ubud).

Recreational Parks

  • Bali Safari and Marine Park - The 40 hectares Park hosts animals representing over 100 species, including rare and endangered species. Among them the Komodo Dragon, the Orangutan and the Bali Mynah bird. Address: Prof. Dr. Ida Bagus Mantra km 19, 8, Serongga, Gianyar district, Phone: (+62) 361 950 000, Hours: Day safari 9am to 5.30pm, night safari 6pm to 9 pm, Price: Depends on package chosen.
  • Bali Zoo - A zoo offering various activities with animals. Address: C758+6J Sukawati, Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia, Phone: +62.361.294357, Hours: Daily 9am to 5pm., Price: General admission USD 25.
  • Bali Bird Park - Address: Jl. Serma Cok Ngurah Gambir Singapadu, Batubulan, Kec. Sukawati, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80582, Phone: +62 361 299352, Hours: Daily 9am to 5pm., Price: Adult IDR.385, 000; Child IDR 192, 500.
  • Kemenuh Butterfly Park - Also in the park: a stuffed butterfly museum and a koi fish pond. Prices are valid if you come by own transport. Alternatively you can choose a package including pick up from Nusa Dua, Kuta, Sanur or Ubud. Address: Jl. Raya Kemenuh, Kemenuh village, Sukawati district, Phone: +62 821 4549 1272, Hours: 8:30am - 5:30 pm, Price: Adult : IDR 100, 000 (USD 10), Child : IDR 50, 000 (USD 5)
  • Kemenuh Orchid Garden, Butterfly Park and Bonsai Collection - The name says it all. Adjacent there is a swimming pool with slides. Address: Jl. Ir. Sutami, Kemenuh village, Sukawati district, Phone: +62 361 9086966, Hours: 8:30am - 5:30pm, Price: Tickets including welcome drink: adult IDR 130k, children4-11 IDR 65k, infant under 4 free. Tickets for the swimming pool including drink and snack: adult IDR 150k, children 4-11 IDR 75k.
  • Taman Nusa, Indonesian Culture Park - Taman Nusa offers a comprehensive and interactive experience on the cultures of Indonesia’s many ethnic groups, set against the natural backdrop of Bali. Visitors will feel as if having travelled around Indonesia on ten hectare park. They will see more than 60 traditional houses, arts and crafts by talented craftsmen, and can participate in traditional dance and music. Address: Jl. Taman Bali – Banjarangkan Banjar Blahpane Kelod, Sidan, Gianyar district (half an hour’s drive from Ubud, Candidasa or Sanur), Phone: +62 361 952952, Hours: Daily 9am to 5pm., Price: Adult USD 29 or 39, child USD 19 or 29.
  • Waterboom Bukit Jati - Water park with body slide, tube slide, river pool and more. Address: Jalan Raya Bukit Jati, Gianyar (11 kilometres from Ubud, 41 kilometres from Ngurah Rai Airport)afari and Marine Park., Hours: 10am to 6pm, Price: Adult DR 50, 000, child IDR 35, 000, family of four IDR 150, 000. Towels, lockers, swimming bands extra.

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This is version 63. Last edited at 19:53 on May 22, 20 by theo1006. 1 article links to this page.

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